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Will O'Brien

LCpl Thomas Stevenson 11 Royal Inniskilling Fus.

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Will O'Brien

As per CWGC

Name: STEVENSON, THOMAS

Initials: T

Nationality: United Kingdom

Rank: Lance Corporal

Regiment: Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers

Unit Text: 11th Bn.

Age: 18

Date of Death: 20/11/1917

Service No: 29652

Additional information: Son of Leonard Stevenson, of Corr, Coalisland, Co. Tyrone.

Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead

Grave/Memorial Reference: Panel 5 and 6

Cemetery: CAMBRAI MEMORIAL, LOUVERVAL

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Will O'Brien

& the memorial info

Cemetery: CAMBRAI MEMORIAL, LOUVERVAL

Country: France

Locality: Nord

Location Information: The small village of Louverval is on the north side of the N30, Bapaume to Cambrai road, 13 kilometres north-east of Bapaume and 16 kilometres south-west of Cambrai. The Memorial stands on a terrace in Louverval Military Cemetery, which is situated on the north side of the N30, south of Louverval village. CWGC signposts on the N30 give advance warning of arrival at the Cemetery

Historical Information: The CAMBRAI MEMORIAL commemorates more than 7,000 servicemen of the United Kingdom and South Africa who died in the Battle of Cambrai in November and December 1917 and whose graves are not known. Sir Douglas Haig described the object of the Cambrai operations as the gaining of a 'local success by a sudden attack at a point where the enemy did not expect it' and to some extent they succeeded. The proposed method of assault was new, with no preliminary artillery bombardment. Instead, tanks would be used to break through the German wire, with the infantry following under the cover of smoke barrages. The attack began early in the morning of 20 November 1917 and initial advances were remarkable. However, by 22 November, a halt was called for rest and reorganisation, allowing the Germans to reinforce. From 23 to 28 November, the fighting was concentrated almost entirely around Bourlon Wood and by 29 November, it was clear that the Germans were ready for a major counter attack. During the fierce fighting of the next five days, much of the ground gained in the initial days of the attack was lost. For the Allies, the results of the battle were ultimately disappointing but valuable lessons were learnt about new strategies and tactical approaches to fighting. The Germans had also discovered that their fixed lines of defence, no matter how well prepared, were vulnerable. The Cambrai Memorial was designed by H Chalton Bradshaw with sculpture by C S Jagger. The memorial stands on a terrace at one end of LOUVERVAL MILITARY CEMETERY. The chateau at Louverval, was taken by the 56th Australian Infantry Battalion at dawn on 2 April 1917. The hamlet stayed in Allied hands until the 51st (Highland) Division was driven from it on 21 March 1918 during the great German advance, and it was retaken in the following September. Parts of Rows B and C of the cemetery were made between April and December 1917 and in 1927, graves were brought in from Louverval Chateau Cemetery, which had been begun by German troops in March 1918 and used by Commonwealth forces in September and October 1918. The cemetery now contains 124 First World War burials.

No. of Identified Casualties: 7042

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Will O'Brien

Thomas Stevenson's online MIC index entry can be seen here

It would appear Thomas landed in France as a Private & his appointment to Lance Corporal occurred whilst on active service.

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Myrtle

SDGW

Born: Killyman. Co Tyrone

Enlisted: Dungannon. Co Tyrone

KiA

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Desmond7

From Fall's history of the 36th on that day.

The 11th Inniskillings, for the final stage of the attack, had now moved in.

This battalion met with somewhat stronger resistance. On the right some determined German bombers held up the advance for a while, the Lewis gunner not being able to see them. Here, as was generally the case, the Germans with their stick bombs out-ranged our men with the Mills, but the Mills rifle grenade more than restored the balance, and the Germans were driven steadily

back.

This company of the 11th Inniskillings was also able to give material assistance to the men of the 186th Brigade, across the Canal, by its Lewis-gun fire. Lock 6 was the last centre of strong resistance. Eventually the garrison fled across the Canal, though few of them reached the other side. About half-past three the Inniskillings crossed the Cambrai-Bapaume Road, and were soon afterward consolidating their position, with their outpost three or four hundred yards north of it.

The bridge across the Canal here, it may be added, had been blown up hours earlier.

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